June 18, 2010
Featroller Review, Belated Discovery Edition:
Featroller Review, Belated Discovery Edition: (copied from DIME)
As a longtime devotee of Feat material from archive.org, I'm ashamed to say that this exemplary show somehow
slipped under my radar until just recently. Man, what a find! Better late than never. You can tell even
during an experimental-sounding Day Or Night that the energy is there. But when Norton Buffalo and Mark Karan
(Ratdog) kick in on Everything I Do, matters swiftly escalate. That Norton Buffalo can blow! I've heard him
with the Feat and Bonnie Raitt several other times, but not like this. It sounds like he soaked his harps in
espresso. Mark Karan is also impressive, but unfortunately he is a bit low in the mix. During 01-02, Everything
I Do was a set list regular, but this is hands down the best version I've ever heard. And that vibe continues
right through Lonesome Whistle and Rag Mama Rag.
Then there is the extraordinary Hanging On To The Good Times with Paul Barrere on the vocal. Has he ever done
that before, or since? It's very good... I thought Shaun would be singing it but Paul lived it, after all, and
what a treat it is. But it's just a warm-up for an outbreak of jazz-rock. The Ingénue stops dead in its tracks
for a blistering 12-minute Dog Races, then resumes where it left off. The Ingénue is one of those songs where
it's interesting to consider what Lowell would have thought. He was no jazz fan, leaving the stage during
Dog Races, but The Ingénue has that wonderfully bizarre where-did-they-come-up-with-that originality Lowell
and Billy had, especially on the first two LF albums.
After a hot All That You Dream and the beautiful Voices On The Wind, all three guests troop onstage for the
Chicken marathon. Whoever recorded and transferred this source didn't bother splitting the various segments
into separate tracks. That's understandable, given the combinations in the solo section. It would go something
like: harp > bass > keys > keys/harp > Born In Chicago... say what? Yes indeed, the blues classic sung by Billy
with Norton's harp riffing away and Stephen Bruton on guitar -- another one of a kind performance!
That leads into Tennessee Jed, now with Mark Karan's stinging guitar turned up (but Stephen Bruton's a little
too low -- oh well), and then a four-guitar 12-minute solo smorgasbord you have to hear to believe. Close it
out with more soulful harp on the Willin' > Bogart encore and you're left with two overwhelming feelings:
1) Lord I wish I had been there, and 2) At least I got to hear this recording before I die.